Saturday, September 29, 2012

Is this heaven? No, it's Whithaven!

Day 3 (Monday)

Today was the big day! We dove the Great Barrier Reef!!! We were up by 7 am, picked up from the camp site by 7:30, and were cruising through the waters in the boat by 8:00 am. We arrived at the famous Whithaven beach by 10:00. This allowed us two hours to frolic along the perfectly white beaches and sandbars. The sand was so fine that it would turn any pair of sunglasses or camera lens to a fog. The sand was formed from granite and had such a high silica content that every step squeaked; some like to say it’s “squeaky clean sand”. We were literally in a preset computer screen savor or a post card. It was unbelievable! The ocean was blue/green and as clear as can be. The sandbars stretch for hundreds of feet and almost connected the islands. Everyday the sandbars and beaches are different. They change during the night and it’s a surprise in the morning.

We saw countless stingrays and three lemon sharks. We started walking from one island to the next and when we were about half way there, the water was only up to our waste. We were disappointed when our two hours were up, but excited to see one of the world’s greatest wonders. Back on the boat we had lunch and then sailed to the dive spot.

I’m not going to embarrass Cole by saying he didn’t dive and only snorkeled, but shit, I guess I just did. Our dive stop was actually a good location for both. In this location the reef wasn’t too too deep. The deepest I dove was 15.3 meters. (Yes, I’m going to make you do the conversion because I’m now thinking in meters and not feet.) This was my first dive since certification! I was a little nervous and had forgotten multiple things. Though, I got a refresher and everything when smoothly. I did two dives that day and the second one was the best. I wish I could tell you all the fish I saw, but I can’t even remember people’s names so who think I’m going to remember fish names?! It’s a whole other world down there! There were crazy colours and coral and most of the things you thought were rocks or nonliving where actually alive! I can’t wait for my next dive! This time around we only did the inner reef and next time I want to do the outer reef. It’s a three day trip (one to get there, one to dive, and one to get back). THAT would be amazing; you have to save something for next time ; ).

That night we parked behind a hotel and were off to destroy the town. We met two Tazzies which unlike the rumors, did not have two heads. People from Tasmania get ‘paid out’ by everyone! One was a school teacher and age didn’t stop them from keeping up with Cole and me. They were both super nice girls and shared their wine with us and paid for the taxi. We had a blast downtown and I even won a dance off with a local! We stumbled back to the van, ate some drunchie food, and crashed.

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